Our brain loves to compartmentalize, why not use this to our advantage?
I was recently pulling out laundry from the dryer. And, the giant mass that emerged from the dryer looked like a chaotic blob of of clothing and towels. I was stumped for a hot second. So, I decided to focus on one article of laundry at a time. In the end, I had several sorted stacks of laundry. And the task, as a whole, was not as overwhelming as it once appeared. This made me wonder: why are we easily deterred from simple tasks? And, what specifically, makes tasks overwhelming?
What I discovered, is that the human brain loves to compartmentalize (or, categorize). This is a survival mechanism. Think about it, your brain is trying to be as efficient as possible when it determines if things are "good" or "bad" for you, or useful or not useful. Your brain cannot determine if something is good/bad, useful/not useful, if it cannot accurately perceive the random items tucked into a giant and chaotic blob of laundry.
So, what do we do here? We categorize! Our brain responds to basic shapes like circles, rectangles, triangles, and squares. These shapes are easier to move and manipulate (think Tetris). The key here is to turn random blobs, into shapes that are more recognizable. Scan your room and create these shapes out of the random clutter lying around. Once you began to do this, you'll find it much easier to reorganize your life!
Everyone has their own method of cleaning. This guide is here to teach you how to unlock your mind so that you can get started. And, trust me, starting is often the most challenging part of any task or project. Follow along with some simple steps to get you from inaction to action in no time.
1. Scan your room and look at the shapes all around you. Even if it's a blob, what is the closest shape the blob resembles? Is it a circle, triangle, or square?
2. Scan your room for the empty and fillable spaces around you. Create opposite and corresponding shapes out of that negative space.
3. Categorize and sort your belongings by shape, value, function, etc. Are your belongings adding value to your life? Do they have a function in your daily endeavors? Which shapes can you bundle together?
Letting go is a major part of the organization process. Sometimes, we form emotional attachments to objects, and this is why letting go can be challenging. Step #3 sets up the groundwork for letting go. I will create a follow-up blog post on this topic!
In summary, the best way to overcome intimidation (in the face of disarray), is to create shapes out of the formless. You want to move away from random and towards structure. This strategy will convert your brain from a "protester of organization" to an "participant of organization."
Take charge of your life, and you will start to see miraculous things begin to unfold! You have more power than you know!
Amor y Canela,